Mary was brought up in a quirky but loving family. Her grandfather is a nudist, her other grandparents listen to the dead as they pass through their house, and her mother espouses feminist views interspersed with motherly advice. When her mother sends her to help her very pregnant Aunt Maureen who lives with her cruel Uncle Troop, Mary finds out how strong she really is. Author Kaye Gibbons tells a tale at that is both funny and sad about how women see themselves and their relationships with each other.

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